These exercises shouldn’t cause pain, if you experience a problem, stop the exercise and consult your Osteopath or other medical practitioner. If you have an existing complaint, it would be wise to consult your practitioner to check these exercises are appropriate for you.
Laying on your back with your knees bent, feet flat on the floor. Breathe in through your nose and try and completely fill up your lungs with air. Make sure you use your lower ribs and diaphragm. Relax and breathe out through your mouth. To try and see if you’re doing this, place a scarf under your lower ribcage, and hold the two ends at the front. When you breathe in, you should feel the scarf pull if you’re working the right area. Alternatively place your hands over the lower ribcage, feel them rise, and feel your ribcage expand outwards and into the floor.
Focus on this for a couple of minutes, just relax and don’t hyperventilate. It may take time to get used to this pattern of breathing.
From standing, raise one arm above your head and side-bend in the opposite direction to the arm you have raised. You may use your other arm to hold the forearm and increase the stretch. Take a deep breath into your lower ribs, to further increase the stretch. Repeat on the opposite side.
SCALENE MUSCLE STRETCH
Sitting on a chair, grab hold of the seat base on one side. Lean your body and your neck away from the side of the seat you have hold of. You should feel a stretch on the side of your neck, hold for 10 relaxed breaths, and then repeat on the opposite side.